- Purchase the complete Expat Arrivals Canada Guide (PDF)
The best advice for expats considering shipping items to Canada is to leave it unless it is essential. Even though the east and west coasts of this massive country are home to large, efficient ports, shipping is expensive and, in most cases, expats can purchase new goods once they arrive in Canada for less than they'd pay to bring household goods overseas. Furthermore, there are plenty of furnished accommodation options available in most Canadian cities.
For those settling in Calgary, or in other inland Canadian destinations, shipping will be especially costly, as the process will require a combination of different delivery methods.
That said, if one can’t bear to part with their beloved household goods, then it is best to spend some time looking into shipping companies and soliciting quotes from providers before committing to an agreement.
Be sure about shipping
If deciding to ship over furniture or heirlooms, expats should firstly make sure their new home can accommodate them. There is nothing worse than navigating the potentially difficult shipping process and then discovering one's couch cannot fit through the doorway. There are also large retail chains, such as Sears and IKEA, which can potentially deliver to one's door via online purchasing. This makes things a little easier for expats busy settling in at home and without a car.
Hiring an international shipping and removals company
For those expats moving from the United States, the cheapest method of shipping to Canada is via the United States Postal Service. Those items with a value that exceeds 20 CAD will be subject to a handling fee, as well as the applicable import duties and taxes. FedEx is also a reliable option, operating around the world with a wide-ranging service that encompasses everything from small boxes to large freight.
Shipping pets to Canada
Shipping pets to Canada requires proof of a rabies vaccine that needs to be obtained prior to arrival. Import requirements have been established on animals and animal products. These apply to temporary or permanent stays for animals, or if they are travelling through Canada in transit. Any undeclared pet or those lacking in the necessary documentation will be confiscated. Authorities are also extremely wary of any sick animal. If an animal is regarded as endangered, the appropriate permits are vital for their entry into Canada.
►For more on finding the perfect home see Accommodation in Canada.
Are you an expat living in Canada?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Canada. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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